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Is communication at night between medical staff and ward staff effective in your hospital?

  • Comments (2)

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Key points

  1. Hospital at night (HaN) services provide cover for roughly 75% of a hospital’s working year and must adhere to the same clinical governance standards as core-time services
  2. HaN practices using bleeps sap staff morale and put patients at risk
  3. Hospitals can function safely out of hours with a small clinical team, but only with the aid of technology to support team processes
  4. Appropriately introduced IT can increase safety and reduce costs
  5. HaN coordinator roles can support ward staff and act as a hands-on nurse with supporting technology

Let’s discuss

The coordination of medical cover in hospitals at night presents a number of challenges.

  • Is communication at night between medical staff and ward staff effective in your hospital?
  • If there are problems how does this affect patient care and staff morale?
  • How can these problems be addressed?
  • What role can technology play in improving communication between wards and medical staff at night?
  • Comments (2)

Readers' comments (2)

  • Anonymous

    communicating with doctors at night is always a problem. It can be really stressful when you know a patient is going off and you have to go through the night coordinators to bleep and then you don't know if they have managed to get someone. You end up bleeping again. Very stressful!

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  • Aurely the answer must be 'Yes' but technology of any sort is merely an enabler. It would still take staff sitting down together and waorking out a way things could be improved. Wireless technology may help - all sorts of communication technologies - but in themselves they dont improve things. Technology and its application is as much about people and process as anything else! I would always recommend chatting to your Director of ICt or your clinical ICT champion to see if they can help.

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